Iceland’s Harpa centre set to spring back to action

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Iceland’s Harpa centre set to spring back to action

Harpa Concert Hall and Conference Centre in Reykjavík, Iceland, is reportedly ready to reopen following closure due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The venue had to close temporarily due to social distancing measures put in place by the Icelandic government on 16 March. Before this, 2020 was set to be a record year for the conference centre.

CEO of Harpa Concert Hall and Conference Centre, Svanhildur Konradsdottir, said: “It was confusing and difficult for us, as for everyone in the event industry, to see things unfold when borders started closing down, but we certainly appreciate that most of our clients chose to postpone their events rather than cancelling them. That inspired us to start right away to plan for the post-Covid-19 era.”

Since 5 April, there has been a steady decline in Covid-19 infection rates in Iceland, meaning that at the time of writing there are a very small number of active cases within the country. On 7 May, Harpa reopened, making it one of the first conference halls in Europe to do so during the pandemic.

Last week, it was announced that, from 15 June, the 14-day quarantine period will not be mandatory for those arriving at Keflavik International Airport, and instead tourists and Icelandic residents entering the country will have the option to be screened for Covid-19.

Konradsdottir said: “We have been working closely with the Icelandic health authorities to enable international conference guests to be safely brought together this summer. The wellbeing of our guests, organisers, and staff is of the highest priority, and we follow strict guidelines on personal hygiene, such as frequent handwashing, sanitation, and social distancing between people. We have implemented processes on how to divide our space into sections to fulfil current regulations on group size and social distancing. We have implemented cleaning procedures for the whole building with particular attention to frequently touched objects and surfaces. Microphones, pointers, keyboards and podiums are disinfected between speakers. Alcohol-based hand sanitisers are available to all guests.”.

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